Dan Puplava: More Teachers Forced to Make Tough Retirement Decisions

In 2013 teachers in Richmond County, Georgia will be faced with a three percent tax adjustment for retirees as set forth by the Teachers Retirement System of Georgia. Financial advisor Dan Puplava comments on the news that is forcing many teachers to retire early to protect funds.

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San Diego, California (PRWEB) October 29, 2012

While many Americans are familiar with the economic struggles that challenge educational systems throughout the country, news from the Teachers Retirement System of Georgia has added even more financial stress to teachers in the Richmond County area of Georgia. A recent article from The Augusta Chronicle highlights some teachers’ experience with the announcement, as some report that they will be retiring early in order to protect themselves from a three percent tax adjustment scheduled to go into effect January 1, 2013. Although some community voices believe the adjustment will not cause as much economic tension as many expect, financial and retirement planner Dan Puplava explains why this cut could make a significant difference in teachers’ fiscal situations.

As the article explains, the foundation behind the current announcement is in response to financial strategies of previous years. It states, “The retirement system created the tax offset in 1990 after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that every state must tax federal and state retirement benefits in the same way. In response, Georgia began charging state income tax for retirees. To balance out that loss, the system created the three percent offset, which applied to the first $37,500 in retirement benefits and essentially made up for the income tax.” The article explains that over time the need for the offset has become null, as retirement has gradually and significantly increased. However, those who retire after the three percent adjustment could face a loss, as they are bombarded with rising costs of living.

Dan Puplava comments, “This three percent will make a big difference in a teachers’ retirement in Georgia. This trend will continue as pension reform for defined benefit programs continue. I think that this is just the start of pension reform. For example, the recent CALSTRS pension reform has cut back the benefits for new hire teachers. That is a big reason why systems need to start a deferred compensation program, such as a 403(b) or a 457.”

Although some teachers have mixed feelings about applying for retirement, leaving their students midyear, many feel that it is important to keep their own benefits as a priority. Dan Puplava concludes with a similar sentiment, “In this economic environment It would be hard to blame a career teacher on taking advantage to qualify for a pension benefit that is about to be taken away if they did not retire early.”

ABOUT:

Dan Puplava currently provides seminars and workshops to teachers and other government employees throughout the area, offering solutions for how they can plan for their own financially feasible futures. In addition to these efforts, he is a veteran of the financial services profession, where he has served as a business columnist and a life insurance advisor among other positions. In 1996, Dan Puplava was hired by the San Diego County Office of Education to develop, design and market a retirement planning program for public school teachers. During this endeavor he developed and designed a new educational delivery system for teachers approaching their retirement, providing innovative methods for ensuring that the region’s educators were able to plan for stable and secure retirements.


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